Kyrie Irving signs a ‘lucrative’ new shoe contract with obscure Chinese maker ANTA

Just seven months after being fired by Nike after his anti-Semitic rants, Kyrie Irving has agreed to a lucrative five-year contract with the obscure Chinese brand ANTA and will amazingly also serve as the company’s chief creative officer.

As ANTA tries to increase its visibility and appeal in the US, Shams Charania of The Athletic announced the agreement on Tuesday. Klay Thompson and Gordon Hayward, two more NBA stars, have already endorsed the apparel company.

In a tweet from earlier this month, Irving, 31, claimed that his own trademark line, which he produced while being previously sponsored by Nike, has earned $2.6 billion in sales over the past seven years.

In a polite manner, the youngsters who grew up wearing or purchasing my shoes know that I am that guy because of the Support WORLDWIDE.Irving promoted an anti-Semitic movie on his social media channels, and Nike stopped their partnership with Irving in November before terminating it permanently in December. Despite being given numerous opportunities to repent, Irving refused to do so.

The Kyrie 8 shoes, which were scheduled to go on sale in November, were also delayed by Nike. Nike issued a statement at the time that read, “At Nike, we believe there is no place for hate speech and we condemn any form of antisemitism.” The situation and its effects on everyone leave us very depressed and disappointed.

Then, before the NBA Trade Deadline in February, he was dealt to the Dallas Mavericks.

The 2016 NBA champion, who has struggled to get off the nickname “LeBron sidekick” that fans have given him because he has never been able to claim a championship on his own, expressed his excitement about working with ANTA on Tuesday.

Sharing the same aspirations, objectives, and missions is the first step in forming a partnership, according to Irving. ‘ANTA’s rapid development over the years, openness to creativity, acceptance of family and teamwork, expertise in areas like product innovation and manufacturing processes have left a remarkable impression on not just me, but also my A11Even team who will work side by side with me in creating something truly generationally special,’ said the A11Even team leader.

According to Boardroom, Irving will now begin the 2017 NBA season wearing ANTA’s Shock Wave 5 shoe. His first signature line is expected to debut somewhere in the first few months of 2024.

The first overall pick in the 2011 NBA Draft, who has 19.2 million Instagram followers and is currently ranked fourth among basketball players, has joined ANTA, following in the footsteps of previous professionals Kevin Garnett, Luis Scola, Rajon Rondo, and Chandler Parsons.

Since his freshman season, when he played for the Cleveland Cavaliers with LeBron James, Irving has had 22 signature shoes released by Nike.

‘Being appointed as ANTA Basketball’s Chief Creative Officer is more than just the fulfillment of my dreams; in fact, it may be the perfect opportunity for me, someone who always has big dreams and values independent thinking, to use my artistic talents to build, create, and unify the culture both on and off court,’ he said.

With Irving now on the brand’s books, ANTA, which has developed more than 9,000 physical retail outlets in Asia, is leading the charge to expand the sportswear market in the US.

According to Mr. Xu Yang, CEO of ANTA, “Kyrie and ANTA came together because of our genuine love for basketball, a love that transcends age, gender, race, and backgrounds.” “We think this partnership will bring a fusion of Chinese and Western cultures and more vitality and creativity for us to continuously push the limits and explore the endless possibilities at the intersection of basketball and culture,” the statement goes.